Nicole Benoit

Creative director    professional Photographer at the creative studios

 Nicole has been described as creator since she was born, actively developing her storytelling voice from the time she could speak. She has been passionate about writing, Photographing and telling story through visual mediums from an elementary school age. At 17, she entered university to begin her studies in law, business and psychology. Simultaneously she was also creating story in front of the camera as an actor while raising two little ones as a sole provider single mom. She has lived in Toronto, Los Angeles and New York over her career eventually doing a post grad in marketing and advertising where she became an advertising Creative Director and then the Creative Director of a Luxury Lifestyle Magazine for 3 years. She then went on to build her own Professional Photography Studio, which she feels incredibly blessed to run as one of her businesses and her creative outlets today. After some time of moving between the worlds of academia and as a creator in the commercial world, Nicole developed a greater drive to be behind the camera as a visual creator who wished to breathe life into worlds of narrative storytelling. First, she began to tell visual stories as a writer/director with a group of die-hard fellow indie filmmakers with her first series of independent films, music videos and 48-hour film challenges. While crafting film stories was her passion, she felt a deep hunger to feed her creator voice on a daily basis and dove into the artistic realm of still image cinematography and storytelling as a professional photographer. Photography gave her the opportunity to more finely tune the craft of storytelling by capturing the inner life and soul of her subjects through the lens of her camera. Her subjects had such a visceral response to the powerful images she captured within them, they often cried with wonder and surprise. They often questioned her natural intuition and talent in exposing their inner selves in ways often they didn’t realize existed beneath the veneer of their perfectly crafted social masks. Her subjects claimed they felt really ‘seen’ for the first time and this ‘seeing’ often changed the way they viewed themselves in a positive way. This deep meaningful connection to her subjects through photography compelled Nicole to push herself further, back into the filmmaking realm, to tell stories about human experiences which move and effect audiences on a thought provoking, cerebral and emotional level. Now armed with years of crafting story via lighting, lensing, technical composition, editing and storytelling on various platforms, she returned to filmmaking with renewed verve and passion and began writing and directing films with a humanistic, narrative voice at its core. She also discovered a passion for directing from behind the camera, bringing her years of composing, understanding the power of expressing story through the art of crafting shadows and light in photography, and leveling that up into the cinematography role. She has been told by others who have experienced her vision and her works, that she has touched them deeply, and has profoundly affected the way they view the challenges they face daily in a positive, impactful way. This response has kept her motivated and hungry to create more stories that are beautifully shot and built from diverse worlds filled with complex characters. Flawed relatable characters who all struggle to strike a balance between the challenges, failings and fears we all experience as universal human truths. For her it was fascinating that these themes run through all story, whether it be ‘Based On A True Story” gritty narrative or a high concept completely fictional blockbuster, or a still legacy image capture. She loves that as a Filmmaker and Photographer, she gets to explore how these complex human experiences are usually in conflict with our deepest desires, and the varied ways each of us struggle to reconcile these competing forces in each one of our unique realities. Nicole’s film’s have garnered her awards for Best Cinematographer with the Canadian Cinematography Awards, Best Canadian Film, Best Actor, Merit, Hon. Best Director, Best Screenwriter and Best Child Actress, Best Supporting Actress. She is currently a semi finalist for Best Director and Best Cinematographer for 'LUCKY BREAK' at Los Angeles Cinematography AWARDS. Both her most recent films are currently in the festival circuit as she prepares a bicoastal relaunch of her photography studio.